UEFA is planning for next week’s Champions League semifinals involving European Super League rebel clubs Real Madrid, Chelsea and Manchester City to go ahead as scheduled, sources have told ESPN, despite the threat of breakaway teams being kicked out of the competition.
Real, Chelsea and City are members of the 12-team group to have signed up on plans to form a competition that would replace the Champions League, with UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin describing those involved as “snakes and liars” on Monday and dismissing the project as “disgraceful and self-serving.”
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Ceferin also raised the prospect of the 12 breakaway clubs, which also include Liverpool, Manchester United, Arsenal and Barcelona among others, being banned from UEFA competition as a consequence of their attempts to form their own lucrative tournament.
Danish FA chairman Jesper Moller, a member of UEFA’s executive committee, said on Monday that those clubs still involved in European competition could be kicked out of the Champions League and Europa League as early as this Friday.
Such a move would also see United and Arsenal kicked out of the Europa League ahead of their semifinal first-leg ties next week against Roma and Villarreal respectively.
Ceferin appeared to offer an olive branch to the rebel clubs’ owners on Tuesday, however, by saying, “Gentlemen, you made a mistake. There is still time to change your minds.”
And sources have told ESPN that UEFA are not considering the expulsion of clubs from their competitions this week and that next week’s fixtures will go ahead.
Real are due to play Chelsea in Madrid on April 27, with City travelling to France to face Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg 24 hours later.